App Smashing (on a Mac)

Something gaining a lot of speed with those that use iPads in schools is App Smashing.  App Smashing is when you use multiple apps to complete an activity or task, that there is no one app to do all of which you want to do.  A fun one to see is when a student uses Google Earth to get a picture, they import that picture into another app to edit and annotate it and then use the annotated image as the background in apps like Educreations or Tellegami in order to create a video about the topic related to that original image.

 
The whole idea behind this is that by combining apps you are able to do much more than before, that you almost have to think outside of the limitations of one app and look at the possibilities by combining apps.  The same idea can be applied to the programs and web apps that we use on the Macs that we use at Ames High.  The specific ways to combine apps is not the key, the idea that we can do so much more by combining apps and programs in order to do much more than before.  
 
Using this mentality we can create in a way that is much more engaging and interesting.  Instead of doing of just creating a Google Presentation to share information we can combine programs like Google Earth and screencasting tools to record a journey through some landscape.  Instead of just turning in a paper or doing a timeline, we can create documents or Google Sites to hold our content and then combine it with a custom Google Map to show the information as it relates to the event we are studying.  
 
There are many different tools that can allow us to edit and annotate documents and images so that we can use them with another program so that we can add video or sound to further the ability of that picture to convey information.  The tools are numerous and you will find multiple tools for each need that you have.  Start by thinking about what you need to end with and figure out the different ways you can get to that final product.  Focus on those programs and apps that are easy to use and export so that you can start in one program and finish in a different one.  
 
For more examples of App Smashing, check out the blog post, http://comfortably20.blogspot.com/2014/03/calling-all-app-smashers.html, by @mrbadura.

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